Technographics: The unexpected acquisition

I say social media, you say Twitter: Social media!

…and I’m getting carried away already. As a stereotypical member of Generation Y, that shouldn’t be surprising. But it’s true. When I think of social media, my first thought is Twitter. Similarly, some of us may think of Facebook or Instagram when we delve into the idea of various social mediums. What is not so common, however, is to think of the technology behind our 140 character tweet-chats and our over-edited, Instagram “selfie.”

Before we can use social media to attract an audience, it is important to understand the technology that made it socially possible for us to fly with the birds.

Introducing: Technographics!

The idea here is simple: Technographics survey individuals using similar data found in demographics and psychographics, but based the information solely on technological behaviors.


According to Social Media Marketing, A Strategic Approach by Barker, Bormann, and Neher, this data can be used to create a social technographic profile in which specific personas are analyzed. Specifically mentioned are creators, conversationalists, critics, collectors, joiners, spectators, and inactives. Each group is analyzed through a different lens depending on how the interact with social media and the types of action (or inaction) they take.

But there’s more to it than that.

In Nathan Richter’s article, “Three Ways to Use Techographics to Deliver a Relevant Customer Service,” Richter explains that some of the best information is found by leveraging the less-obvious side of technographics. Because I’m so used to associating social media with the mediums themselves, these suggestions were enlightening and unexpected.

1.) Collect Device-Based Information

Understand whether your audience is visiting your website or social media site from a Mac or Widows operating system. Furthermore, collect data on if they’re using an iPhone or Android smartphone, or an iPad vs an Android-based tablet. What this



Because smartphones  account for a larger share of website visits, use what is known about the mobile user’s device to your advantage. For example, the iPhone user is typically paying higher monthly data rates, so one you could consider advertising or delivering a more relevant experience for your customer based on their presumed economic situation.

2.) The New Browser Wars

Similar to the email marketer paying attention to subscribers’ service providers, identifying the web browser a customer is using when she visits your website will tell you a lot about her level of technical sophistication.


This means analyzing whether your customer searches for your page through Google Chrome vs. Windows 6 (*making mental note to state using Chrome so I can be a interweb-intellect too!) Although this piece of data doesn’t provide a direct map to household income, it will give you strong insight into what type of consumer she is, which can impact the offers you present to her.

3.) Viewport: The New Screen Resolution

Finally, it is important to know what the experience your customer is engaging with looks like. If the area of the web browser where users can see actual content of the web page is too small or too large, then it will be less engaging for your publics.

Aesthetic, responsive web design will improve the user experience and yield more positive results..



So, my friends, next time I say social media, you should, instead, say technographics! And think specifically of those that pertain to information beyond just the social media site that’s being used or the persona that is engaging with it.

Until next time, my friends

-Mariah Suddarth


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